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So - here we are again! Over 1 3/4 million hits in May. Over half a million in April. Certainly picks up when we 're doing our bit. I'm not sure where I finished last time, so I'm going from June 1. I think I remember a few of these, but I could be losing it altogether.
Took my first peek into the chat room yesterday. Some guy's ranting on about how I trod on his girlfriend's fingers at a gig and never apologized and I'm a pr--k. Well, this could have happened, but I have absolutely no knowledge or recollection of it. I'm sure this guy wouldn't be so livid if it didn't happen - so I'll assume it did. So my apologies to your dear lady - If you see me coming next time (if there is a next time) I recommend all removement of fingers immediately. As for the p---k bit, well, I can deal with that. I've never said I wasn't a p---k and probably am one a lot of the time. I thought we all were capable.
Jason: Says Leeds was fantastic. So much the better than 'stuff that gets churned up on the charts.' How long does it take to write a song - the quickest I can remember was 'When My Minds Gone' offa Mad Shadows which was pretty much instant in the studio. 'Walkin' With A Mountain' was all over in three hours. Some of the songs on Dirty Laundry, i.e. 'Scars' took about an hour or less. Darrell and I wrote about three or four in one day, I think. Honest John was doing it as well. 'Once Bitten' was ten hours at Ronno's flat behind the Albert Hall. One the other hand, 'Ships' took six years. Had the verses, but no hook. I don't think you should rush a song unless you're in a very special environment. If you're in an inspired situation - get it out before it goes.
Kathy Machado - Hello Kathy. No gigs planned as yet. Just finished two and a half years and feel like a holiday. I'm also beginning to look like one.
W.A. Huffman: 'Reviews hype, myth-makers mean nothing. Your music is true to me' Thank you W.A. Beginning to feel like Michael Winner (oh, no).
Andy Baker liked the set in England better than last year. Says Manchester was brilliant. Good to see Mick. The whole band was tight. Says I slipped up at the end - I surely meant to say Liverpool for Number One next season. Of course, Andy, of course.
Rikard: 'Happy Birthday' Thank you.
Miceal Kelly: Saw us at Amoeba in LA. Moved from Liverpool to LA (move back!). Can you leave Liverpool? I know some that did. If I'd have been born there I don't know if I could have left. It has a pull for me. I know it's a bit duff, but the heart is so strong.
David Robey: We don't have a mutual acquaintance.
Terry Greenhalf: HB. Thank you.
Mick Mitchell: We've done this right Mick? 'Dead Man Walking' is officially the best song in the world. Well, it probably isn't Mick, but we'll just sit here and bask.
Steve Fitzgerald: Steve lives in Philly and for one reason or another never saw Mott and only saw me once with Ronno at the Spectrum. Wants a CD of the latest British tour. Well, a CD was recorded in Manchester. I haven't heard it yet. It will come out eventually, but not yet as I have the DVD and CD from Oslo being finished and that will probably be released first. Still no dates for any of this stuff. I'll let you know when I know.
By the way, the Ringo tour I did last summer will be on a pay per view August 11th. The CD comes out August 6th and the DVD will be released in the autumn. Look out for details on the news board. So altogether what's coming up:
Peter Lewis went to 9 English gigs with Julie. Very good Peter, but hardly special badge attendance.
David Pool: Happy Birthday (ta) love to see me and Ralpher in Philly. Says Rant's a killer.
Tracey Samuelson: John Rose from the University of Chicago is celebrating my birthday on his radio show. Tracey couldn't make any of the UK gigs but enjoys the reviews that other people post. Next best thing he says. Thanks for the HB.
Roland wants to thank all the band (especially Gibbo) for a great tour. Wants it again next year. Is there a CD coming out? (see previous post).
Renee: 'May the next year be as exiting as the last and forgive hoping it bring me to LA.' I've got no problem with that. I just wish we could have found the avenue. It'll happen at some point. Could always busk outside the Whiskey!
Steve Baratta: Just got Artful Dodger and says it's as good as Rant. Says Citadel messed up the numbering of the songs on the booklet and on the back, they left out No. 10. Well, what gets me is that Kris Gray is still selling them. He has no legal rights the record any longer - and he never sends any royalty statements. Business as usual. Happy Birthday. Thank you.
Pat says Happy Birthday - thanks Pat.
Tony Howard: Thanks
Steve Daniels from Birmingham, Alabama - HB - thanks Steve.
Colin Powell saw seven shows and like Newcastle best. Everybody brilliant.
Mike Brideweser asks, 'How did Ronno and I know 'Forgotten Rebels'? Well, Mick and I toured Canada a few times and they were managed by Donny Blais who used to get us the gigs. Lovely chaps, but the lead singer had the overwhelming urge to self-destruct on stage. Just when the people loved him he would insult them until they hated him and then he'd play something really pretty and they'd like him and then he'd start really insulting them again etc. We go on great with them (hence the credit on the CD), but that was then and this is now.
Thomas Martin: 'According to sleeve notes on OBTS I was invited to join Uriah Heep as their lead singer.' Can I confirm that this is true and how did I react? Yes, I can confirm this was true and my reaction wasn't very good. The money was great though.
Jim Angelo says the Detroit News has my age as 63. Typo or fact? A definite typo, James. No doubt about it.
Dave Callow wishes Miller Anderson had a web site. I wish Miller had a web site. Miller has a lot of fans spread out here and there. A site would bring them together. 'Blood Sweat and Tears' musicians were on AAAB. Were they on any others? Well the guys on AAAB weren't necessarily from BS+T. Jaco wasn't officially in BST at that time. Louis Solof might have been. Bobby Colomby was the drummer and he was pivotal in the early days putting together AAAB, but he wasn't on it.
Mick Toomey asks if Ralpher and I will do the U.S. The sort answer is I don't know. We want to do something, but we're not sure what that is.
Billy Beattie has made an Ian Hunter marionette to perform at the Edinburgh Festival. I will headline the Puppet festival. Well thanks, Billy!
Beth was at the Astoria and didn't have the bread for a T-shirt. Where can she get one? I don't know - they sold out. Next time.
Birney asks if I have any rights to 'left on the cutting room floor stuff' regarding footage from Oslo. Is there any way I could direct market these bits to the always starving fans? I don't know, Birney. I'm going over today so I'll see what happens.
Tom Lyday - World's No. 1 Mott fan just bought a computer and reporting for duty! Plays in a band called 'Blackbird'. Show casing for Interscope this month (best of luck). Says Mott comes 5th on the all time list. Did I get life size copy of AAAB cover? Probably not. Mad Shadows 'that beautiful mess of an LP' (I like it).
Chris saw the Astoria and Cambridge shows. He bought two copies of 'Rant' Gave the other one to Tony Shelvin. M.E. Of East Anglian Daily Times. Who then did a spread on the Cambridge gig and apparently a superb review afterwards. Well thank you Chris and thank you Tony!
Andy Martin' 'Where do you stay overnight while touring the U.K.?' Well Andy, Stan Tippins bought this government surplus ridge tent. We wait 'til all the cars have left the car park and then - up it goes!
Tony Thomas: 'How big a crowbar did you need to wedge 'humming birds hum' with 'Burglar alarm system?' Glad you noticed that one, Tony. I thought it was cute.
E.D. Bootlegs. Well - you know. They say the true fans get everything anyway. It's OK to a point, but people gotta get paid from something or they stop doing it. You know, bootleg this - burn that. Long term - it's not clever. But life is so short term these days, isn't it?
Steve Brassington especially enjoyed Nottingham! Steve, you're totally mad!
Kim Fletcher: Bootlegs again. However, Kim lives in Thailand so we'll let him off. Apparently there's a bootleg of Ralpher and me called 'A Night At the Opera' (Newcastle?). What does it matter what I think. It's out, isn't it? Must be frustrating for Angel Air. Wants to review it. A bootleg review. No comment, Kim. No comment.
D.M.J.: Happy Birthday. This I understand - thanks!
Tut Bartzen's got a friend who's name is actually Tom Mott. Tom and wife just had a sprout. Poor little chap's called Ian Hunter Mott. He's got no chance. I wish him all the world in the world.
Scot Dasson's five year old daughter, Charlotte, begs him to play 'Rant' in his van. You know we're getting a lot of 4, 5, 6 and 7 year olds lately. What does this mean? Two immediate things come to mind: 1) I'm retarded. 2) All these people are going to be major fans when I'm dead.
Andrew Field asks what do I think Guy would have thought of the DVD. Dunno. You never could tell which way he'd go. Would I thank him for starting me off? He was one of them. The main one. Guy would create and destroy. Not quite true. Guy loved beginnings, but didn't have much sustain. Guy did ring me a lot when he was doing 'London Calling'. For one reason or another he wanted out. I told him to stay put and get on with it. 'The trouble with Ian Hunter is he takes himself too:.........well, 'seriously' would be the word that comes to mind. Perhaps if he could have taken himself a little MORE seriously, he might still be with us. Guy's estate does do well. A lot of people didn't like Chris Blackwell. He did stick with Guy though. He was the last one to give up on him. They went back a long way. Chris was loyal to Guy plus Guy's creative streak was truly breathtaking when he was full on. Chris was no fool. He knew he needed a GS. No, I never tried to put Guy's poem to music. It came that way. Have I ever fancied a duet with Tracie? I don't think either of us gave it a thought. If it ever comes up I'm sure we could.
Morning Glory: 'This rose in the dust bowl loves you.'
Willie: Says Glasgow was his second favourite show of all time - the first being Falkirk where we played anything we could think of off the bat a few years ago. I remember that gig. First time I saw Iron Bru on tap. They owe Ralph C Nesbitt a fortune in royalties.
Peejay says teletext channel 4 gave Leed 9/10 and said it was not a nostalgia gig! Excellent.
Kevin O'Connor: Making the case for L.A. - and a legitimate case it is too. I'd love to do LA. It's the powers that be. Says LA people are so sick of LA radio they're moving to the internet.
Chilli Woods: 'Rant' excellent, great night at the Garage in Glasgow. Are there any photos available? I haven't got any. Me and Ralpher in the studio? Who knows. We're both up for it.
Ben Wilson: Larry Loud - do you know each other?
Michelle - Your head's gone! The rowboat/pond video was 'All of the Good Ones are Taken.'
Dickie and his mates were jigging away at the Garage until Dickie reminded the others when they'd seem me the last time. Glasgow Apollo - 1973. So they all stopped jigging and quietly found some seats. PANSIES.
Peejay - What's the tax rate living in the U.S.? All depends on how much you earn. Let's just say it's a lot better than in England. I could go on, but I won't. I live in the state of Connecticut (highest taxed State of them all). I'd like to live in the U.K. when it gets itself together. I don't know what they think of me in Canada. Suggests a sitcom of the Hunters. Sorry!
Wynard needs Portland dates. Actually, Portland's rather lovely. I was up there last year. Pretty place in the middle.
Kelly - Hi Kelly. yeah, I did enjoy Tracie's band and for that matter Dan Baird's band. Great night out - and I did get the card. Thank you XX
Pete Stavrakoglou: This guy put off cancer surgery to go to a New York area gig. MANIAC. Wants a Long Island gig. We'll see.
L.D.N. I have three kids. Steven is the eldest, Tracie's in the middle and Jesse's junior.
Richard Mills: Talking about the Uris not being filmed; he says the Hammersmith riot should have been filmed too. Well - I don't know what it was like musically, but it definitely would have been an eventful eyeful. I just remember Morgan Fisher sliding their grand piano under the safety curtain so they couldn't lower it any further. Richard saw Astoria (fantastic).
Actually a few people (including Cuddles) have mentioned the Astoria in glowing terms. I'm glad so many people enjoyed it. It was early on in the tour and Ralpher was still adjusting. I would have preferred to have done it later down the list, but that was the way it worked out.
Ziggy Rokita: Bristol - lovely - raw. Astoria consummate. Cambridge fun. Peter Hook mentions Manchester gig in Q. Apparently loads of bands attended Manchester gig. Why not 'Resurrection Mary'? Lot of slow songs - can't do them all. 'Wild'n'Free? It's OK.
Ray 7 Sheila: Would I do Atlantic City. I did Atlantic City with Ringo. Trump's place. Worst gig of the tour. No class.
Nigel Woodall: Says Marc Riley (Radio One DJ) always goes to at least one of our gigs on every tour. Apparently Marc was in the Fall before joining the Beeb.
Andy Morgan: Manchester was a cracker! And was taped. His girlfriend, Dawn, couldn't make it. She was at a Barry Manilow gig! This relationship is heading nowhere, Andy.
Kouri: Will we be back in Minneapolis? Hopefully.
John N: 'Death of A Nation' is his favourite.
Mike/Tuscon: Have I lost any hearing. My hearing is 'dire' according to my local ear specialist. I'm not sure if it's the amps. My Dad was deaf and his sister as well. It could be genetic. On stage I use one plug. Helps me with the low notes and tuning. Any chance of us coming to Tuscon? There's always a chance Mike.
Peter Stanislow: Was I on Chip Davis' 'Speakeasy' in the early 70's? I seem to recall talking to Chip Davis at some point, but this isn't something I would remember.
Andy Dav: What would I have left of 'Artful Dodger'? Well, 'Artful Dodger', for a start!
Peter Joyner says OK. He's bought 'Rant', he's listened to it - he likes it. Now will I play Irene Wilde. Ah, you only like 'Rant'. Not enough.
Bill Martino: Big Country and me are the only things making sense to Bill. Also loved Cleveland show. Alright, Bill.
Jeff: Why wasn't 'Rant' nominated for a Grammy? Because it was good. Yes, the 'Heep' money was tempting, but not that tempting. Good luck with the David Byron book. Got offered the Doors gig too, at one point.
Scott Brown - Belated thanks and congrats on U.S. tour. Apparently I said 'Dead Man Walkin' was the best song I ever wrote when we were in Baltimore. Was Trudi formerly Trudi Heller. No. I know who you mean, but no.
Paul Billington says Wolverhampton was better than Manchester. Haven't gotta clue. Everything went so quickly.
Clyde Woods loved Northampton. Do I still talk to Darrell Bath? I haven't seen Darrell in a while, but it's geographic. If he was down the end of my street I'd see him all the time.
Jeff Part loved Birkenhead (what are we going to talk about next month). Will we do it again next tour. Well, we'll be doing Liverpool or B'head, I'm sure. Ralpher was pure class (that's how I see it as well).
Ian Kell ask who was the best band that opened for us? I'd say Joe Walsh and Barnstorm. Quality. 'Twisted Steel' is on the Oslo DVD and CDs.
Peter Jordan; Thanks for Leeds and Burnley. Do I worry about the people I write about? Good or bad - I think what you're talking about gets edited (or aborted) at birth. I write so much stuff which is plain cranky, boring, preachy, vindictive - but it's just a mood and I scrap it the following day. I've got some miserable little genes in me just like everybody else. I just rip the stuff up and forget about it. Those songs that do make the cut - I stand by. Am I optimistic about human nature? Overall - yes. Like roaches, we seem to survive everything. There are millions of truly amazing people out there who make up for the cretins inflicted upon us by the media. But make no mistake about it; we are living in a mad house. Isn't it fun? It's what you make of it. 'What a Bloke' list. Ain't got time.
Greg J bought Corky Laing's 'Secret Sessions'. Are there any more of these oddities? I remember Mick Ronson and I doing a stream of consciousness thing for two days with John Cale and Corky but I don't know what happened to the tapes.
Joe Eglash's got writer's block - what does he do? Beats me; I've got it at the moment too.
P.J. Martinez: 'Rant' is worth ranting about.' Thank you.
Cindy: Is the 'Ian Hunter' CD released in 1975 a limited edition? Cindy has the CD! Well, Cindy - they didn't have CD's in 1975. So, if you've got one I'm sure it's exceedingly limited.
Ichiro Nitta: 'Rant' great. Come to Osaka!
Jim Whittaker: When am I touring the U.S. again? When Marsha Vlasic rings me up and asks me. Plays on a softball team called 'Mott'. (My picture on T-shirt). Wow.
Alan Godard: When does the DVD come out in the U.K.? Don't know yet.
Paul Ridley finally got to an IH gig. Cambridge. Not the most auspicious occasion for a debut, but still!
Sean Arkless: No, I do not remember falling through the toilet door at the Half Time Orange in 1999. Us cool chaps don't do things like that.
Deano was at the Garage in Glasgow and at Irving Plaza in New York. Like I said earlier, we're all out of T-shirts.
Jeff Wilson: I produced an album by 'Mr. Big' which was only released on Angel Air recently. I liked them a lot. Phil T. bought 'Rant' 12 months ago. Says it's one of the best buys he's ever made. He asks how Oslo came about. Norwegian Universal came to the Astoria in 2001 along with Bjorn Nessjo who produced 'The Artful Dodger'. Peter - the head of Universal in Norway offered to fund this project if I would do it. Bjorn organized it and we all had a great time. Phil's daughter won a prize in a pub quiz for knowing I did 'Invisible Strings'. What are the odds on that!
Trevor Yeardley: Do I remember the cheque bouncing at the Mayfair in Doncaster in the old Mott days? Apparently we wouldn't play and went to see Fairport at the Top Rank instead. Trevor says we had a great night.
Hope likes 'Skeletons in Your Closet' and 'I Need Your Love'. Never quite got 'I Need Your Love' right in my head, but if it does it for you - great.
Jonathon White says if my first solo album would have been a Mott the Hoople album it would have finally pushed us into the Big League. I wouldn't have written those songs if I hadn't left, so you can't say that.
Joe Davis: 'Manchester brilliant. Great to see Ian and Mick together.' (Got that Michael Winner feeling again). Oswestry! Land of my infancy.
Cameron Harris talks about 'Waterlow' and Highgate cemetery. (Karl Marx is buried there). Suicide Bridge. Peter Sellers talked somebody down off that bridge; that's a high bridge.
Wayne Koehler: Happy Birthday. Thank you. Stage fright. Get rid of it any way you can. Tightens the throat muscles and limits your range. I was plagued with nerves for years, on stage and in the studio. That's one great thing about having gotten older; I don't get stage fright anymore. Horrible.
Russell Patterson says 'Rant' plays on. Enjoys Horse's Mouth.
Randy via Anita wants to know when I'm coming back to the U.S.A.? I'm already here.
Dan wants to know why doesn't the discography include covers. You have a point, Dan. I'll ask the wife.
Pete (Blackpool Boys) said Burnley was an absolute blast. Apparently they do smile at the Pleasure Beach occasionally. I'm talking about the poor punters. They always look worried. 'Boy's' about a lot of things.
Keith Isaacson says 'Rantastic' favourite music purchase in ten years. Are you looking at this Fico!
Richard Usher: Oh dear, Richie. There you go. Sorry about that. I was wondering where you were. You'd have loved it. Stan and Mick on top form. Maybe next time. Love to Worthing. Be well and don't dwell.
Sean Callahan says the acoustic version of 'Dudes' on Howard Stern's show reduced him to tears. Well, I didn't think it was that bad Sean.
Stepane: Repeat the message the spellings messed up.
Klaus Luckefeld asks what did I whisper in David Bowie's ear at the Freddie Mercury benefit? 'England 5; Germany 1!'
Kitty Shuffler: Sorted
Rich Girod: Noted.
Kevin asks if any other Motts came to see us? Phally came to Cardiff. Blue Weaver was in London. Pete wouldn't come because he's stupid. Stan and I both tried to get him to come, but he's got these daft ideas in his head. If he did come, he'd have loved it. Kevin says Manchester was 'shit hot'.
Jim McConnel says there's been some wonderful surprises lately - Ringo - Oslo - Mick Ralphs - anymore? That's enough excitement for one year, James. Back on your head.
Ken Kirby needs 'Mad Shadows'. Get onto Universal to re-release the Island records.
Tod Ballinger - Store manage FYE Houston. Still has 'Rant' on instore play rotation since it came out. Well that's great to hear Tod. Says it's cool to see teenagers come up and ask what it is and then they actually buy it! Asks who's idea was 'Laugh At Me'? I'm proud to lay claim to that one. We did it at the Whisky and Cher was there.
Manfred Kohler says the critics like 'Rant' in Germany. Now my German fans are waiting to see me. Well, Manfred, it's largely up to the label over there. I can't do it on my own. I need help.
Nick Wood asks if I've got any say in getting the early albums released on CD. None whatsoever. The record companies own the masters. They can do what they want.
Mike Nealon saw the Glasgow show and thought it was superb. Asks why did I tease by only singing the first line of Irene Wilde. Well, at the time Ralpher didn't know the song. So I would do a bit and then a bit more and by the time we got to Wolverhampton he had a pretty good idea what was going on and so we finally did it.
Stale Tonning: I think I discussed the Hell Festival with Bjorn and because of the Oslo situation we thought we'd let it ride this year and see how things develop. No idea where I'll be in late October. More of that later. Hope to see you along the way.
Joyce: Hi Joyce. Tracie's moving. Yeah, I like 'Purgatory'. Of course neither record label would consider it as a single. Well, they considered it but that was as far as it got. Interesting situation in England. I think we've been passed onto Echo that now Papillon have disintegrated. When we arrived in England Echo let us sell the CD at gigs but refused to re-service the CD to shops. It takes me two years to write the album and now I have to sell it for you as well. Just exactly what is your role in the marketing of this CD?
John Von Reine says pick up Pulse at Tower Records. The one with David Bowie on the cover. Says it Raves about 'Rant' and bouquets to the band. Great.
Craig Stornoway/Isle of Lewis: Sorry mate. Can't help you there.
Alan Keinch also tried to find Mr. Stopps re Aylesbury, but got no response. P.S. What's my gig rate. Obviously a little high for Mr. Stopps.
Lionel: The Hague or Amsterdam in the near future? I wouldn't think so.
Mike Barone: requests a visit to South Florida. - We shall see.
Bruce: 'How long does it take to come down after a show?' It's not as bad as it was. Two hours maybe. Says he misses the old showmanshippy me. I don't.
Chris Brown says Manchester was a 'religious experience.' Favourite song is 'Standing In My Light'. (Not in Manchester.)
Steve H. enjoyed Wolverhampton, but missed the intimacy of the Bilston II. The thing was we'd never done the Wulfrun and we wanted to see what it was like. Also, it was the last gig and we felt the bigger stage and dressing rooms would be more comfortable at that stage of the tour. But I've not doubt we'll do the Robin or the Robin II another time. Enjoy both of those gigs; we've had some great nights there. The people who run the Robin are great; particularly the lady who used to run the Stoke gig. Glad you enjoy 'Why you I ORTA'.
Mark Hannan: ' Jesus f---ing Christ (tut.tut!) - I just got 'Rant' and it's AWESOME. I was cranking up the volume at a street corner yesterday with some fool blasting his Limp Bisket and he actually turned it down to listen to 'American Spy'. Maybe there's hope yet for Generation Y or whatever it is they call themselves.' Has VH1 ever been in touch? Course not!
James A. McInerney: First off, James, I have nothing to do with Dale Griffin - so that's between you and him. As far as the rest of it goes - life's too short and everything's fine. I do, however, remember sitting on a tour bus -me, you and Mick and we both told you a) not to do it and b) if you insisted there would be little help from us. This is what I remember clearly and you said you were fine with that. People have asked us since and I won't do it at all anymore. Anyway, James, take it easy as I am about to because yours was the last missive and I'm outa here.
Going to Oslo to hear final mixes tonight. I'm a day late, July Fourth messed me up. It was Sunday every day this week and now it's really Sunday. Like I said, no dates for anything that's being released yet, but it'll work itself out. So - I'd better get packing.